Press Release
May 11, 2010


TARLAC CITY, Tarlac: Liberal Party standard bearer Sen. Noynoy Aquino on Tuesday thanked Filipinos for the support that gave him a significant lead in the May 10 presidential race.

Aquino said he is ready to accept the responsibility of leadership, and has started a talent search to form his new Cabinet.

"I am grateful to the Filipino people for their support and to our loyal supporters in our people's campaign who made this achievement possible. It has been an honor to share this humbling experience with all of you as we begin to accept the responsibility of leading our nation of over 90m Filipinos," he said.

"However, our commitment to the integrity of this election was and remains that the vote of each Filipino be counted fairly and honestly. When the vote is complete there will be plenty of time for declarations. Our priority today is to make sure every vote for Mar Roxas is counted fairly and honestly," he added.

Aquino gave the press briefing shortly after his erstwhile closest rival, NP bet Sen. Manny Villar, announced he was conceding the presidential race to Aquino. Villar dropped to third, trailing second placer former President Joseph Estrada, in the ongoing official, partial count of the Commission on Elections (Comelec).

Villar's admission of defeat was followed by four other presidential bets, including Gilbert Teodoro, Richard Gordon, Eddie Villanueva, and JC delos Reyes. Estrada, who is four million votes behind Aquino, has refused to concede even as his lawyer alleged irregularities in the vote.

Aquino, however, declined to claim victory for now, saying only Congress can proclaim him as president.

Instead, he asked the Filipino people for prayers and support so he can overcome the divisions now afflicting the country.

"One of the things impressed upon me by my parents among others and my school is a sense of humility. One does not claim victory until it is a certainty," Aquino said.

Meanwhile, Aquino said a talent search is now ongoing for Cabinet posts, with former Social Welfare Secretary Corazon Soliman as the only one sure of getting her old job under President Arroyo.

He also said he is looking for a lawyer to be his next executive secretary.

Aquino also complimented the Comelec for the successful implementation of the elections, but declined to make a judgment until the entire election process is over.

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